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Fantasy Football Start/Sit Week 14: Start Geno Smith, D’Onta Foreman; Sit Tom Brady, Devin Singletary

Fantasy Football Start/Sit Week 14: Start Geno Smith, D’Onta Foreman; Sit Tom Brady, Devin Singletary article feature image
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Photo by Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images. Pictured: Tom Brady.

A number of shocking things have happened over the first 13 weeks of the season, and setting fantasy lineups might be a serious chore with the sheer number of injuries and befuddling situations.

Whether you are undefeated and cruising toward the one-seed, or playing to avoid a last-place punishment, stay diligent on the waiver wire and make savvy start/sit decisions.

As a reminder, Week 14 is Bye-Nado 2.0. The Falcons, Bears, Packers, Colts, Saints and Commanders are all off, meaning you will need to find replacements for Cordarrelle Patterson, Drake London, David Montgomery, Justin Fields, Cole Kmet, Aaron Rodgers, Christian Watson, Allen Lazard, Aaron Jones, Matt Ryan, Michael Pittman Jr., Jonathan Taylor, Chris Olave, Alvin Kamara, Taylor Heinicke, Terry McLaurin, Antonio Gibson, Brian Robinson Jr. and more.

Below are some players at each position you should start in Week 14, as well as some players you should consider sitting based on matchups, injuries and trends.

Week 14 Start ‘Em

Quarterback to Start

Geno Smith, Seahawks (vs. Panthers)

If you told me Geno Smith would be the fantasy QB10 on a per-game basis through 13 weeks back in August, I probably would have laughed.

Smith has been nothing short of phenomenal and has finished as a top-15 quarterback in all but two games. He finished as the QB3 in Week 13 after completing 28-of-39 attempts for 369 yards, three touchdowns, one interception against the Rams. He should perform well against the Panthers‘ 20th-ranked pass defense (according to DVOA) and is a top-12 play in Week 14.

Jared Goff, Lions (vs. Vikings)

Like Smith, Goff has been a pleasant surprise … albeit slightly more feast-or-famine.

Goff has finished as a top-15 quarterback in five of his 12 starts, one of which came in Week 13 against the hapless Jaguars. He completed 31-of-41 attempts for 340 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions and was the QB4.

Goff gets another favorable matchup against the Vikings, a game which has the highest point total of the week (52.5). Minnesota ranks 24th in pass DVOA and has allowed the ninth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks. This should vault Goff into the streaming conversation — especially with quarterback injuries galore and six teams on bye.

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Wide Receivers to Start

D.J. Moore, Panthers (at Seahawks)

Starting Moore has felt like a bit like playing Russian Roulette. He has three top-10 finishes and nine outside the top 24.

Turmoil at the quarterback position has done him no favors, though the return of Sam Darnold — the Panthers’ third starting quarterback this season — could actually boost his value down the stretch.

Moore caught 4-of-6 targets for 103 yards and a touchdown in Week 12 against the Broncos, finishing as the WR9 in half-PPR scoring. He will be well-rested coming off of a bye to face the Seahawks defense, which has only been a smidge better than the Panthers’. Moore should be low-end WR2 with upside in Week 14.

Joshua Palmer, Chargers (vs. Dolphins)

Palmer has been a bit of a letdown since his monster, top-3 finish in Week 11. He caught seven passes (11 targets) for 60 yards in spite of a soft matchup against Las Vegas in Week 13.

Palmer’s recent drop in production inevitably has something to do with the return of Keenan Allen.

Allen missed seven of the Chargers’ first nine games due to injury. He has scored double-digit fantasy points in every game since then and has found the end zone in back-to-back games.

Even amid this mini-slump, Palmer should be considered a viable WR3/flex play this week against the Dolphins, whose defense has been better of late, but still ranks 23rd in pass DVOA.

Adam Thielen, Vikings (at Lions)

Thielen has been up-and-down all year — case in point: A WR13 ranking sandwiched between WR66 and WR67 finishes over Weeks 11 to 13.

He struggled in Week 13 against the fifth-ranked Jets pass defense (per DVOA), catching just 2-of-6 targets for 27 yards.

Thielen should have much more success against the Lions, whose defense has allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to wide receivers. He should be regarded as a WR3/flex with upside.

Jakobi Meyers, Patriots (at Cardinals)

Just when a Meyers breakout seemed to be upon us, the Year 4 wideout fell off a metaphorical cliff.

In Weeks 5 through 8, Meyers was the WR7 in half-PPR scoring. Since then, he ranks 66th and logged a season-low 22 yards in Week 13 against the Bills.

Part of Meyers’ struggles have been the matchups. In the last three weeks, the Patriots have faced two top-5 defenses (Jets and Bills), according to defensive DVOA. I expect Meyers to finish somewhere in the WR3/flex range in Week 14 versus the Cardinals, whose defense ranks 25th in pass DVOA.

Running Backs to Start

Isiah Pacheco, Chiefs (at Broncos)

Pacheco has settled in nicely as the Chiefs’ workhorse back. The rookie has three games in a row with at least 15 touches and double-digit fantasy points in half-PPR scoring. Most recently, he rushed 14 times for 66 yards and a touchdown — and caught two passes for 16 yards — against the Bengals in Week 13.

Pacheco’s role seems to increase when the Chiefs lead comfortably. The good news is that Kansas City enters this matchup as nine-point favorites over the Broncos, who are brutal against the pass, but middle-of-the-road against the run. Pacheco is a RB2 based on volume and opportunity.

D’Onta Foreman, Panthers (at Seahawks)

Foreman had a massive role in the Panthers’ Week 12 win over the Broncos. He rushed 24 times for 113 yards and finished as the RB26 in half PPR while Chuba Hubbard rushed 17 times for 65 yards.

Foreman is dealing with a foot injury, but assuming he plays, he should have a nice game against the Seahawks this week. Seattle ranks 24th in rush DVOA and has allowed the second-most fantasy points to running backs. Foreman is a RB2 with upside in this sweet matchup.

Latavius Murray, Broncos (vs. Chiefs)

Murray is a textbook case of opportunity outweighing ability. He began the season as Alvin Kamara’s backup on the Saints, then later found himself on the Broncos in a nasty time share with Melvin Gordon Jr., Mike Boone and Chase Edmonds.

Murray has somehow risen to the top of this committee situation and is now the team’s No. 1 with Gordon out of the picture and Boone and Edmonds injured.

He rushed 17 times for 47 yards and caught four passes for 14 yards in Week 13 against the Ravens, finishing as a top-36 running back for the eighth game in a row. He should be considered a low-end RB2 based on volume.

Jeff Wilson Jr., Dolphins (at Chargers)

Just when it seemed like Wilson had a stronghold on the Dolphins’ backfield, he completely flopped in his Week 13 revenge game.

He rushed once for three yards and caught 0-of-2 targets. In fairness, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was injured in this brutal matchup against the 49ers‘ defense, which ranks second in rush DVOA and has allowed the fewest fantasy points to running backs. Raheem Mostert was utilized more, but he was also kept in check with seven rushes for 30 yards.

Wilson and Mostert should bounce back against an opponent on the other end of the defensive spectrum. The Chargers rank 30th in defensive rush DVOA and have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to the position. Wilson is a low-end RB2 with upside in this plus matchup.

Tight Ends to Start

Greg Dulcich, Broncos (vs. Chiefs)

Dulcich is back in our good graces once again following a strong performance against the Ravens. The rookie — who seems to be one of the only positives this season for Denver’s anemic offense — reeled in 6-of-8 targets for 85 yards and finished as the TE4 in half-PPR scoring.

Prior to that, Dulcich had logged just seven catches for 52 yards and zero touchdowns from Weeks 10 to 12 combined. In a week with six teams on bye, he is a top-12 play against the Chiefs, who rank 26th in pass DVOA.

Evan Engram, Jaguars (at Titans)

Engram had a solid Week 13 against the Lions and caught 5-of-7 targets for 30 yards and a touchdown. He finished as the TE5 — his fourth top-12 finish in the last eight games.

While volatile, Engram is a legitimate streaming option against the Titans. Tennessee ranks 22nd in pass DVOA, which should vault Engram into the low-end TE1 tier.

Defense to Start

Seahawks D/ST (vs. Panthers)

I recommended starting the Seahawks against the Rams in last week’s start-sit column. That worked out quite well — the unit forced two interceptions and sacked John Wolford four times for a loss of 30 yards.

I like them again this week against the Panthers, who are somehow simultaneously on the fast track to a high first-round draft pick and in contention in a wide open NFC South.

Week 14 Sit ‘Em

Quarterback to Sit

Daniel Jones, Giants (vs. Eagles)

Jones has certainly had his moments this year. He has finished as a top-12 quarterback in four of 12 starts, one coming in Week 13 against the Commanders. He completed 25-of-31 attempts for 200 yards and one touchdown and he rushed 12 times for 71 yards.

I doubt Jones will be able to replicate this success in Week 14 against an Eagles defense that ranks sixth in overall defensive DVOA. His rushing production should keep him in the QB2 tier, but I would be wary of trusting him in one-quarterback leagues with fewer than 16 teams.

Tom Brady, Buccaneers (at 49ers)

Despite a slow start, Brady has actually been decent of late. He’s tallied 18 fantasy points in back-to-back weeks and has tossed multiple touchdowns in each of his last three games.

That said, this is not an ideal game to start Brady in a contest with a 37-point total. San Francisco ranks sixth in defensive pass DVOA and has allowed the fourth-fewest fantasy points to quarterbacks.

Brady is a risky play who could easily fall outside of the QB1 tier in Week 14.

Wide Receivers to Sit

Brandon Aiyuk, 49ers (vs. Buccaneers)

Since the 49ers’ Week 9 bye, Aiyuk has just one game with double-digit fantasy points. In Week 13 (with Brock Purdy playing most of this game), he caught 5-of-9 targets for 46 yards and finished as the WR49 in half PPR against the Dolphins.

Purdy will continue to start for the remainder of the season with Jimmy Garoppolo out with a broken foot, which could certainly impact Aiyuk’s value down the stretch.

The 49ers have a tough Week 14 matchup against the Buccaneers, whose defense ranks eighth in pass DVOA. Their front seven, which has recorded the fourth-most sacks this year, could be a problem for San Francisco’s inexperienced signal-caller. Aiyuk is a risky WR2 with limited upside.

Diontae Johnson, Steelers (vs. Ravens)

Johnson is a frequent fixture in the sit section despite his hefty target share.

He was targeted on 40.7% of Kenny Pickett’s passes in Week 13 against the Falcons and caught 5-of-11 for 60 yards to finish as the WR38 in half PPR. Rookie George Pickens was a non-factor and caught 1-of-2 targets for two yards.

Last week, I said, “Johnson is great if you need between 7 and 9 fantasy points week in and week out” and he ended up scoring exactly nine. He has yet to finish as a top-24 receiver this year and will probably deliver a similar fantasy performance against the Ravens‘ 11th-ranked pass defense.

Darius Slayton, Giants (vs. Eagles)

Slayton had another quality game in Week 13 against the Commanders. He caught 6-of-8 targets for 90 yards and finished as the WR24 in half PPR.

Slayton is far from the best WR1 on a team, but he is the one the Giants have right now. I expect him to struggle against the Eagles. Philly’s defense ranks second in pass DVOA, one spot behind the Cowboys (Slayton caught 3-of-6 targets for 63 yards against the Dallas in Week 12), and have allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers.

Slayton is a low-end WR3/flex in this tough matchup.

Donovan Peoples-Jones, Browns (at Bengals)

Peoples-Jones salvaged an otherwise lackluster showing against the Texans by way of a fluky, 76-yard punt return touchdown. Aside from that, he caught three passes for 44 yards. The cumulative effort was enough for him to finish as the WR25 in half PPR.

I am pumping the brakes on Peoples-Jones (and the Browns offense) amid the return of Deshaun Watson, who looked quite rusty in his first game since the 2020 season.

The Browns also face a much tougher adversary in the Bengals, who rank 10th in pass DVOA and have allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers. Peoples-Jones is a desperation WR3/flex this week.

Running Backs to Sit

Zonovan Knight, Jets (at Bills)

Knight has been spectacular for a guy many fantasy managers probably did not know about until two weeks ago.

He burst onto the scene in Week 12 against the Bears and was the RB24 in half PPR after Michael Carter went down with an ankle sprain. He had an even better game in Week 13, rushing 15 times for 90 yards and catching five targets for 28 yards to finish as the RB13.

Overall, the entire Jets offense looks better with Mike White pitching. Gang Green won their Week 12 matchup handily and were very much competitive against the Vikings in Week 13. They may have a tougher time staying afloat and manufacturing run-friendly game scripts in a road contest in which they are 9.5-point underdogs.

Buffalo’s defense ranks third in rush DVOA and has allowed the 10th-fewest fantasy points to running backs. Knight is a risky, low-end RB2.

Rachaad White, Buccaneers (at 49ers)

White appears to be closing the gap on Leonard Fournette after each week.

He was out-snapped by a count of 48 to 33, but still saw nine carries for 28 yards and caught 6-of-8 targets for 41 yards and a touchdown, finishing as the RB14 in half PPR. Fournette had 10 carries for 49 yards and caught 6-of-7 targets for 32 yards and was the RB19.

White is a superstar in the making and has finished as a RB2 or better in three straight games. I would probably avoid both this week, if possible, against a stout 49ers defense that ranks second in rush DVOA and has allowed the fewest fantasy points to running backs. White is a low-end RB2 with a near-zero floor.

Devin Singletary, Bills (vs. Jets)

Singletary and rookie James Cook are trending in opposite directions.

Singletary found the end zone in Week 13 against the Patriots, but he was out-touched by a count of 20 to 13 despite splitting snaps fairly evenly. Cook logged 20 total touches (with six catches) for 92 all-purpose yards and was the RB15 in half-PPR scoring (the best fantasy game of his short career).

I am not particularly enthused about starting either this week against the Jets, who are above average against fantasy running backs and upset the Bills in Week 9. Singletary was fairly underwhelming in the effort and logged eight carries for 24 yards and four catches for 24 yards in the effort.

Now, with the majority of the passing work getting funneled to Cook, Singletary could end up disappointing this week. He is a RB3/flex in Week 14.

Gus Edwards, Ravens (at Steelers)

Please raise your hand if your fantasy team has been personally victimized by the Ravens’ backfield this year.

Edwards seemed to be “the guy” once he made his season debut, logging 16 carries for 66 yards and two touchdowns against the Browns in Week 7. He was banged up in Week 8, missed the next two games, and has seen his role dwindle since. He saw a season-low six carries for 12 yards and was the RB66 in half PPR in Week 13 against the Broncos. Kenyan Drake was slightly more effective and had seven carries for 29 yards and caught two passes for 17 yards.

Neither Edwards nor Drake are trustworthy starts against the Steelers, who have been above average in rush DVOA and fantasy points allowed to running backs this year. Edwards is a low-end RB3 due to Baltimore’s hazy running back situation.

Tight End to Sit

Dawson Knox, Bills (vs. Jets)

Knox has finished as a top-12 tight end only twice all season. He saw a season-low one target and did not catch said target last week in New England.

Things won’t get any easier against the Jets, whose defense has been stingy against the pass. New York ranks fifth in pass DVOA and has allowed the 11th-fewest fantasy points to tight ends.

The last time these two teams met, Knox logged three catches on four targets for 25 yards. I do not expect much better than that in their Week 14 rematch.

Cade Otton, Buccaneers (at 49ers)

Otton is coming off of a breakout game against the Saints. The rookie caught 6-of-10 targets for 28 yards and a touchdown and finished as the TE3 in half PPR. Otton, however, was bageled in the week prior against Cleveland.

The good news is that Otton could be shaping up as the much-needed Rob Gronkowski replacement for Tampa’s offense. The bad news is that Otton’s targets in Week 13 were likely inflated with Cameron Brate sidelined.

Brate practiced in full this week and will, in all likelihood, return for to face San Francisco. This is not a favorable matchup as the 49ers rank sixth in pass DVOA and have allowed the fourth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends. Otton belongs on your bench — at least for this week.

Defense to Sit

Broncos D/ST (vs. Chiefs)

The Broncos defense has been phenomenal this year and has been a stark contrast to their offense. The unit ranks seventh in overall defensive DVOA, top two in points allowed per game (17.0) and top three in total yards per game (304.6).

Denver finished as the DST4 last week against a Baltimore team that was without Lamar Jackson for three quarters. The Broncos logged two interceptions, four sacks and allowed just ten points in the effort. I do not expect lightning to strike twice for their DST in terms of fantasy with the Chiefs on deck.

Kansas City ranks first in offensive yards per game (423.3) and offensive points per game (29.2), and rank as the second-worst fantasy matchup for DSTs.

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